Land Rover has just unveiled its Discovery Vision Concept SUV in New York, twenty five years after the launch of the first iconic Land Rover Discovery.
The new concept vehicle is actually a preview of three new Discovery models that are due to be released over the next few years, the first being a replacement for the current Land Rover Freelander, rumoured to be called the Discovery Sport which will come in both 5 seater and 7 seater options, due in 2015.
The next model due for release will be the full-size replacement for the current Discovery which insiders have said is very similar in design style and size to the Vision Concept vehicle.
The third model is expected to be a whole new model, possibly smaller than the current Freelander, although this is speculation.
The SUV concept vehicle shown at the New York show features some impressive and most innovative technology we have ever seen in a car including “Smart Glass” which displays information to all occupants of the car and can be control via gesture control.
Its immediate to see the huge difference in style when looking at the current Discovery next to the new Vision Concept but there are a few things that are recognisable such as the asynnetrical numberplate indent on the tailgate and the stadium style seeting arrangement.
A clever exterior feature of the Vision Concept is the clever slide out section that can be configured to be used as a bike rack. The rear doors are of the Rolls-Royce hinged style and using the gesture control to open them, provide a nice clear view of the vehicles interior. The gesture control uses motion sensors to switch lights on and off, activate the rotary gearshift and well as well as other thing… lets hope it makes it to final production.
Inside all five of the rear chairs are controlled by a touchscreen lcd monitor housed in the dashboard. The bases of the chairs flip up to slide forward and also fold flat to create useable tables. The third row of seats are even finished in a different colour as if they are “first class” seats, meaning you can fold the other seats out of the way and produce a space likeable to that of a limousine.
Talking of the seats, the leather isnt your standard fitment either. Its actually a super advanced leather by the name of “Foglizzo H20” that is totally oil and water repellent.
Practicality remains a strong selling point with the Discovery and some clever features such as the wheeled bags fitted in the doors and even modern designed takeaway carrier hook are items you will probably wonder how you ever lived without.
I previously mentioned “Smart Glass” This is an extremely impressive feature that not only acts as a head-up display for your usual controls, such as speedo, satnav etc but it also means information can be displayed on every single glass panel on the car, and that includes the roof!
When combined with the Land Rovers new eye-tracking system and Sat-Nav the system can apparently track a passengers eye and if they spot a local landmark the system will display information about the landmark to the passenger on the infotainment system on the seat in front of them or to their paired smartphone.
To finish the new “James Bond” style gadgets, the vehicle has laser terrain scanning and even “Remote Control Drive” which allows the driver to operate the car by remote control outside of the vehicle if for example it was trying to make it through a tight spot.
So far there has been no mention as to what will be powering the new models but a new range of Ingenium and Hybrid engines is expected to reach production vehicles.
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